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Natalia: Buenos días, soy Natalia.
Carlos: What’s going in on? My name is Carlos.
Natalia: “I think there was a misunderstanding.” Hello Carlos, ¿cómo te va en la vida?
Carlos: My life is beautiful, Naty. Very beautiful. Sunshine and lollipops all around.
Natalia: Hoy decidí hablar en español toda la lección.
Carlos: Are you going to talk to me in Spanish the whole thing?
Natalia: Toda la lección.
Carlos: Okay.
Natalia: Bueno, Carlos, pregunta. You know what it’s too boring. We’ll get there, we’ll get there. When we get to supper advanced level, we’ll do all the lessons in Spanish, okay?
Carlos: Which is when she is going to start nagging me in Spanish and just…
Natalia: Imagine that, we want you to be with us.
Carlos: Oh yes, you want to hear it all.
Natalia: Yes. Anyways Carlos, have you had let’s say misunderstandings since you got to Costa Rica?
Carlos: Although one thing I will say about Naty, she has now started saying, “Carlos, don’t put that in the lesson.” But misunderstandings in Costa Rica, Naty?
Natalia: Yes, you know like the cool Charlie talking I guess.
Carlos: Oh definitely. I mean listen I’ve been here for a little time now and I’m learning but let me tell you, there have been some situations that I have read completely wrong. Like we talk about my tone being misunderstood a lot at first.
Natalia: Well, it’s gotten better or we’ve gotten used to it.
Carlos: You know it’s probably a little bit of both, you know it has gotten better but I can tell you right now, the minute I meet someone in New York down here, it moves right back.
Natalia: I know Carlos, it’s natural I guess. You know, you understand each other better.
Carlos: Well, it’s part of who I am and you know, you spend some time abroad, I mean what experiences and cultural misunderstandings did you have?
Natalia: Well, first of all I had to explain to people where Costa Rica was, that was a bit of a misunderstanding as explaining the country I was from. And then sometimes language.
Carlos: You know what, I’ve never been to Australia and I would think that people have a good sense of geography but… you know I’ve heard you are not supposed to sit in the back of a taxi cab. In Australia it’s insulting.
Natalia: You know, because here it’s the other way around you usually sit in the back but anyway, do you see what I am talking about? There’s cultural misunderstandings from the slightest things. Also when I was in Chile, I had a misunderstanding when they gave me hotdogs for breakfast.
Carlos: That’s disgusting.
Natalia: I told them I want a real Chilean breakfast and they gave me two hotdogs.
Carlos: That’s a Chilean breakfast?
Natalia: Well, they gave me that and then I said “hey do you have something a little lighter?” So they gave me bread with chicken in guacamole.
Carlos: Okay.
Natalia: They like their food. So our grammar point.
Carlos: It’s a big one.
Natalia: El Pretérito pluscuamperfecto. Ha ha.
Carlos: The what?
Natalia: I love to hear you say that. “El Pretérito pluscuamperfecto”.
Carlos: “Pluscua…” I’m going to start walking around saying that. My name will be “pluscua…” Okay, I’ll wait for the grammar section.
Natalia: Carlos, is the preterit perfect.
Carlos: Okay.
Natalia: Okay Carlos, you know what? You should just wait till the grammar section comes.
Carlos: Yes, Naty.
Natalia: Okay, so are you ready for conversations?
Carlos: As always.
Natalia: But before we do Carlos you know what it would be time to open up today’s lesson guide in your pdf reader.
Carlos: You know you want to.
FATIMA: ¡Oiga, Daniel, lo esperé por dos horas, pero usted nunca llegó!
DANIEL: ¿Qué? ¿En qué habíamos quedado?
FATIMA: Me dijo que a las dos me iba a recoger de mi casa.
DANIEL: ¿Que la iba a recoger? Yo tenía entendido que a las doce la iba a llamar.
FATIMA: Bacán...
DANIEL: No... no… me parece es que hubo una confusión.
FATIMA: Listen, Daniel, I waited for you for two hours, but you never showed up!
DANIEL: What? What had we planned on?
FATIMA: You told me that at two you were going to pick me up from my house.
DANIEL: That I was going to pick you up? I had understood that at twelve I was going to call you.
FATIMA: Awesome...
DANIEL: No... no… I think there was a misunderstanding.
Carlos: Okay, that was a little bit of misunderstanding.
Natalia: I hate people showing up late so much.
Carlos: Yes, me too.
Natalia: Oops.
Carlos: It’s one of my pet peeves.
Natalia: Let’s change the topic.
Carlos: Yes. Yes, well I think Fátima has taken it pretty well.
Natalia: Well, you know she’s kind of like oh what are you going to do now if the time’s already up, right?
Carlos: But you know what, Naty? Now that we’ve gone through the conversation you know what I want to do.
Natalia: Well, now you want to do, you have to do them. The vocabulary! Go, go!
Carlos: I want to. Okay, first up we have a verb.
Natalia: Okay, we have “quedar”.
Carlos: “To plan on.”
Natalia: “Que-dar”, “quedar”.
Carlos: Then we have a verb.
Natalia: “Recoger”.
Carlos: “To pick up.”
Natalia: “Re-co-ger”, “recoger”.
Carlos: Then we have a past participle.
Natalia: “Entendido”.
Carlos: “Understood.”
Natalia: “En-ten-di-do”, “entendido”.
Carlos: Then we have an adjective. Slang.
Natalia: “Bacán”.
Carlos: “Awesome”, “cool.”
Natalia: “Ba-cán”, “bacán”.
Carlos: Then we have a verb.
Natalia: “Haber”.
Carlos: “To have”, “there to be.”
Natalia: “Ha-ber”, “haber”.
Carlos: And last but not least, a feminine noun.
Natalia: “Confusión”.
Carlos: “Confusion”, “misunderstanding.”
Natalia: “Con-fu-sión”, “confusión”.
Carlos: Okay. “Quedar”, “recoger”, “entendido”, “bacán”, “haber”, “confusión”.
Natalia: And that’s how you are supposed to say it. Yay, Carlos, don’t start doing those noises, see.
Carlos: You see I’m having fun and I’m like…
Natalia: You put him in front of the microphone and he starts like yo, yo!
Carlos: What if you put me in front of the camera.
Natalia: Oh my God! Let’s now do Spanish pod live.
Carlos: Spanish pod live in San José, Costa Rica. I’m Carlos and this is Natalia.
Natalia: Okay, he just waved. Okay, let’s see how we can use the vocabulary, right? I think it’s better.
Carlos: I’m ready when you are, Naty.
Natalia: “Quedar”.
Carlos: “Quedar”. “To stay”, “to remain.”
Natalia: Right, but here we are looking at a new meaning.
Carlos: Really?
Natalia: Ojo. El verbo quedar también puede significar planear o programar.
Carlos: Okay, so it can mean to plan as in to plan on something.
Natalia: Yes. “¿En qué habíamos quedado?”. “What have we planned on?”
Carlos: It’s coming along.
Natalia: Notice that its participle is “quedado”.
Carlos: So to form that you take an infinitive ending for an “ar” verb such as “quedar” adding the ending “ado”
Natalia: Exactamente, Carlos.
Carlos: “Te he entendido muy bien”. “I have understood you very well.”
Natalia: Are you blending examples?
Carlos: Like they say work smart and not hard so “entendido”.
Natalia: Entendido. Let me explain, let’s trace our steps backwards, we said that “quedar” is an “ar” verb and it turns into “quedado” when it’s a participle.
Carlos: Yes, I remember that.
Natalia: So then if the word “entendido” is a participle, how do we figure out that it’s a verb?
Carlos: “Entendido” means “understood”, so the ending is “ido”.
Natalia: So what’s the root?
Carlos: “Entend-”. Come on Naty, you have a lot of questions.
Natalia: But I want answers. Carlos, which kind of participles have the ending “-ido”?
Carlos: “-ido” you mean?
Natalia: “ido”.
Carlos: Those are formed “er” and “ir” verbs.
Natalia: Carlos want’s a boring voice. Be happy! So it sounds better to say “entender” or “entendí”?
Carlos: No, it’s got to be “entender” with an “er” at the end.
Natalia: Hey, that’s a good one.
Carlos: Yes. Okay, you know what? I have never heard the next word, “bacán”.
Natalia: This is a slang word mainly used in Latin America that means “cool” or “awesome.”
Carlos: Right, it’s used in today’s conversation.
Natalia: Fatima says “bacán” sarcastically because she waited for Daniel for wait too long and she’s kind of angry at him.
Carlos: Understandably.
Natalia: So we can say “la película estuvo bacán”, “the movie was cool.” But beware when we use the word “bacán” as a noun. Now it refers to an arrogant person.
Carlos: For example…
Natalia: “Ese tipo se cree lo máximo, es un bacán”. “That guy thinks he’s the best, he’s arrogant.”
Carlos: Right, I hate people like that. Do you know many?
Natalia: No.
Carlos: Me either. Next up, a very, very common verb.
Natalia: “Haber”.
Carlos: “Haber”. “To have”, “there to be.”
Natalia: Today this verb showed up conjugated to the third person singular of the absolute preterit. Remember this is “la forma terciopersonal” or “la impersona”. “Hubo una confusión”, “there was a misunderstanding.” Okay, just compare this to the present. “Hay una confusión”, “there is a misunderstanding.” “Hay” in the present, “hubo” in the preterit. And just to really blow your mind, “había una confusión”, “había” is the imperfect. In this case the verb “haber” is a verb of existence and not a helping verb.
Carlos: Naty, you are really getting like deep today but “hay una confusión”.
Natalia: To be or not to be.
Carlos: Okay, Hamlet.
Natalia: ¿Cuál es la confusión? Are you telling me the truth or are you just going into the next example?
Carlos: Ah, you know me too well, Natalia, it’s a little bit of both.
Natalia: Okay, “confusión” is a feminine noun that means “confusion” or “misunderstanding.”
Carlos: Which does this come from?
Natalia: Well, this arrives from the verb “confundir”, “to confront”, “to confuse”, “to misunderstand.”
Carlos: So…
Natalia: Let me see, an example could be “me confundí”, “I got confused.” Also pay attention to the difference between “confundido” and “confuso”.
Carlos: Okay.
Natalia: If I’m looking at a painting and I cannot understand it well I could say “estoy confundida” but if I look at a painting and it’s vague then I could say “está confusa”, “it’s confusing.”
Carlos: I would say either one seriously because I like looking at art but I can’t say I would understand it.
Natalia: You don’t like looking at art?
Carlos: No, I love looking at art! It’s wrapping my mind around it that…
Natalia: You don’t like giving the deep comment about the interpretation and the labor and the abstract meanings and deep pull within your souls.
Carlos: I like the brush strokes.
Natalia: I like the frame.
Carlos: Naty, time for grammar! I miss localisms.

Lesson focus

Natalia: Oh Carlos, well you are going to learn more here.
Carlos: Ah claro que si Naty! But I still miss localisms.
Natalia: Well, today we have something that we’ll let it speak for itself.
Carlos: That doesn’t sound good. What?
Natalia: Carlos, “el pretérito pluscuamperfecto”.
Carlos: The what!? The preterit pluperfect?
Natalia: Yes, let me explain to you a little bit about this use, so you get that last phase of yours. Anyway, the preterit pluperfect tense expresses a past action before another action in the past with an undefined time between the two.
Carlos: I really, really hope this isn’t in the conversation.
Natalia: Carlos, I know the whole meaning sounds a little bit confusing but look how easy it is. It was, Daniel ask “¿En qué habíamos quedado?”
Carlos: Right, “what had we planned on?” Okay so just to clarify this, it’s like saying “I had spoken” instead of “I have spoken.” Right?
Natalia: Yes or again “Ya había comido cuando me invitaste a cenar”. “I had already eaten when you invited me to dinner.”
Carlos: Story of my life.
Natalia: I’m the other way around. I just show up and the dinner.
Carlos: I’m hungry, I haven’t eaten since yesterday!
Natalia: Poppy eyes never fail. Carlos, you know no one feels sorry for you though. The pluperfect from is “yo había hablado” and the other one “yo he hablado” that’s the preterit perfect.
Carlos: Okay, so now there is a specific way to form the preterit pluperfect?
Natalia: Look, to form it we use the imperfect tense of the auxiliary verb “haber” and a past participle.
Carlos: Like our example, “habíamos”, “we had”, from the verb “haber” and then “quedado”, “planned”, past participle of the verb “quedar”. Okay, so learning “haber” in the imperfect….
Natalia: Very important.
Carlos: What about irregular forms?
Natalia: Well, the only irregular forms occur when the participle is irregular.
Carlos: Okay, what about “haber”?
Natalia: The forms of “haber” remain the same, it doesn’t matter what kind of participle is used.
Carlos: Okay, so you could conjugate a verb for us in the preterit pluperfect?
Natalia: Sure. Let’s use the verb “sufrir”, “to suffer.” Carlos, exactly what can happen to you if you don’t learn the stems. “Suffer.”
Carlos: Okay, “sufrir” it is...
Natalia: Okay, “yo había sufrido”, “tú habías sufrido”, “él había sufrido”, “nosotros habíamos sufrido”, “vosotros habíais sufrido”, “ellos habían sufrido”.
Carlos: Alright, so I see that I really need to have the forms of the imperfect tense down in order to use the pluperfect.
Natalia: That’s right mister and while you always have to remember the regular participle in Spanish is formed by removing the infinitive ending and adding “ado” ending for varies of the first conjugation “ar” and “ido” for verbs of the second “er” and third “ir” conjugations.
Carlos: Well, how could I forget that?
Natalia: I say you just get it all written down. Carlitos, well you can forget it’s just by being you, you know it’s in your nature it’s nothing you can do.
Carlos: Oh yes, like I’m the one who forgets everything.
Natalia: That’s a different conversation.
Carlos: Yes.
Natalia: So well for it and “ar” verbs like “quedar” we get “quedado”, for an “er” verb like “meter” we get “metido” and for an “ir” verb like “sufrir” and we get “sufrido”.
Carlos: You know Naty, I feel like this is one of those tenses that’s really going to open things up for me in Spanish.
Natalia: And why do you think that?
Carlos: Well, because so often I want to explain a couple of different things that happen at different times in the past and up until now I’ve always use the same tense, which was probably confusing for the people I was talking to, luckily they were patient.
Natalia: Well Carlos, that is probably not the only reason it was confusing but you know you have to learn this tense or pay the consequences and I’ll be picking on you and testing you when we are not recording.
Carlos: Okay, Naty. Well if it’s like that, I’m going to do my homework. So you better assign some.
Natalia: Okay, well let’s see today if you had to ask, “aquí viene la tarea”, “here comes the homework”. I am going to give you five verbs in Spanish, these verbs are going to be conjugated to the preterit perfect tense of the indicative mood. What you have to do is change each verb to the preterit pluperfect maintaining the personal number.
Carlos: How about an example?
Natalia: Sure, if I say “he comido”, “I have eaten”, the answer would be “había comido”, “I had eaten.” You ready? Number one, “hemos quedado”. Number two, “habéis hablado”. Number three, “has dicho”. Number four, “ha avisado”. Number five, “han vuelto”.
Carlos: Remember, you can always check out the answers with comments on the answers in the premium audio track labelled “tarea”, homework. Now Naty we’ve done it up again.
Natalia: We did it again.


Carlos: Well, we’ll wrap things up for today.
Natalia: Yes Carlos, well ok, es hora de decir adiós. ¡Chao!
Carlos: Chao.


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